The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Friday, 29 August 2008

South Ayrshire Council Leadership Panel
reports a year of achievement

THE members of South Ayrshire Council’s Leadership Panel have produced their first ever Annual Report for 2007/08. The report looks back on the achievements of the past year and recognises the firm foundations that have been laid for the future.

[Pictured: Councillor Hugh Hunter, Leader of the Council
and Chair of the Leadership Panel.]

Each member of the Leadership Panel is a Portfolio Carrier - this means that they have particular responsibility for certain areas. they are:

Councillor Hugh Hunter - Leader of the Council, Chair of the Panel and Portfolio Carrier for Corporate, Strategic and Community Planning.
Councillor Bill McIntosh - Portfolio Carrier for Resources and Performance.
Councillor Margaret Toner - Depute Leader of the Council and Portfolio Carrier for Community Services.
Councillor Hywel Davies - Portfolio Carrier for Learning and Prosperity.
Councillor Peter Convery - Portfolio Carrier for Sustainability and Environment.

The Annual Report includes contributions from each of the Portfolio Carriers on their own areas of responsibility.

Speaking about the report, Councillor Hugh Hunter, Leader of the Council and Chair of the Leadership Panel said: “Since the elections in May 2007 there have been major changes in the way the Council goes about its business. In particular it has marked the start of a new style of leadership within the Council.

“Since the formation of the new Council we have re-examined the Council’s foundations, and where necessary, rebuilt them. We have radically changed the Council’s decision-making process and introduced a cabinet style system, focused around a Leadership Panel and a strong scrutiny process. This has been supported by a unique move towards cross-party consensus decision-taking, resulting in less contentious and more consistent leadership of the authority. Like never before, all elected members can now influence the running of the Council.

“The last year has been a good one. We have made great progress and a lot has been achieved, thanks to the close working relationship between Councillors and Officers. There is now an energy within the Council like never before, we are driving our vision forward and these are truly exciting times. We have achieved a lot, but we must keep focused and continue to word hard for the people of South Ayrshire.

“The Leadership Panel is tackling things head on, members make decisions and act on them. In the current financial climate we are facing significant challenges, but decisions have to be made and we do not flinch from them. The decisions reflect the Council’s commitment to the whole of South Ayrshire, residents, businesses and visitors to make it the best place it possibly can be to live, work or spend leisure time.

“There have also been significant changes in the Council’s Chief Officers. There is a new Chief Executive and a new Director of Social Work, Housing and Health, who together with other Chief Officers make up the Corporate Management Team.

“As a Council we now aspire to be ‘the most dynamic, inclusive and sustainable community in Scotland’. This is an ambitious goal, but based on the current rate of improvement, it is by no means an unrealistic one.

“I would encourage everyone to read the Annual Report. It gives an illuminating insight into how the Council operates and the successes achieved over the past year.”

“I would like to thank the elected members of all political parties and the dedicated employees of the Council for the way in which, through hard work and co-operation, they are making real changes within the Council that will bring many benefits to the people of South Ayrshire.”

The Leadership Panel report can be viewed on South Ayrshire Council’s website by logging on to

The report will also be formally presented at the next South Ayrshire Council, by which time copies of the report will have been printed and will be made available within libraries across South Ayrshire.

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